KABELJOUS RESERVE ACTION GROUP NEWSLETTER MARCH 2021

KABELJOUS RESERVE ACTION GROUP NEWSLETTER MARCH 2021

Our Kabeljous Reserve continues to be a popular destination for outings with the parking area filled to capacity on a regular basis.  There was a Christmas holiday and lockdown rush on the reserve, and it has continued to be well used by walkers, cyclists, photographers, bird watchers, picnickers, fishermen, as well as by tour groups from Port Elizabeth and scouting groups.

With lagoon levels dropping fast, the wetland area is drying up and unfortunately is not accessible by canoe currently.  Even #Jbay Rocks have found their way into the reserve.

A Committee Meeting was held recently.  Feedback was given on negotiations that are in progress concerning the future of the reserve.  

KRAG’s application to SARS for PBO status and tax exemption was approved late last year. This means donors can make tax deductible donations.  This is a big step forward in developing KRAG into a credible conservation organisation.

KRAG is still engaging with DEDEAT (the provincial conservation authorities) to formalise a partnership for dual management of the reserve, and to get it formally declared as a Nature Reserve.

We believe KRAG has proved itself to be a credible conservation partner dedicated to supporting the provincial conservation authorities in the protection and maintenance of the Kabeljous Reserve.

The donation box has proved to be successful in bringing in cash to help with daily expenses such as fuel for the chainsaw.  EFT and cash donations over the holiday period also helped to boost the bank account.  There is currently no membership fee and any donations, no matter how small, would be most welcome.  The public and visitors are reminded that this is the only income for the upkeep of the reserve.  Most of the funds needed for maintenance come from the volunteers. Donations for the upkeep of the reserve can be made via EFT (KRAG ABSA 409 6986 749), SnapScan or the donation box.

Unfortunately, our popular moonwalks were suspended due to lockdown, but we hope to resume these in the near future.

The St Francis Bird Club are regular visitors to the reserve and they have very kindly donated and erected benches at good bird viewing places.  Two other benches made from recycled plastic have also been donated by a family.

Rescue tortoises and snakes are regularly released into the reserve providing a safe home for them. Please notify Hennie if you are going to carry out a release.

Maintenance in the reserve is ongoing. There are always trails that need to be kept open, alien vegetation to be removed, etc.  Alien vegetation removal is a back-breaking, but necessary job if we wish to protect our rich variety of indigenous plant-, animal- and bird life.  Woodcutters from Humansdorp are helping to clear out the Rooikrants and in turn, they get to sell it for firewood.  They work on weekdays so please do not be concerned if you see them in the reserve.

A large hole has been dug for the big pile of jointed cactus that has been removed.  The jointed cactus will now be dumped into this hole and will eventually be covered up.  We thank the volunteers involved in alien removal – it is a tough job that they do so well.

Erosion on the dune path has been dealt with, but further work is still needed.

Trail signs, indicating paths, have been erected, over the fence, on the Grootfontein side.  There are no official trails here, but visitors are allowed to use this adjoining area.

Negotiations are ongoing to incorporate this land into the reserve which will greatly increase the size.

A number of future projects are being planned.

- A book sale will be held to raise funds in the near future.

- Donations of books, to assist with this venture, are welcome.  Please contact 083 505 8880.

- The ditch at the parking entrance needs to be filled.

- Bushbuck bridge needs upgrading.

- The concrete pipes at Bushbuck bridge and other concrete debris in the reserve must be removed.

- Plant signs need checking – several have broken off due to sun exposure.

An appeal to our volunteers –

We need active volunteers who will take initiative when it comes to maintaining our reserve.  Please step in and carry out tasks where you see the need.  You do not have to wait for a formal workday.  If something needs attention just go ahead and do it.

One area, needing constant attention, is the trash that collects at the entrance.  This is caused by passing traffic and also, unfortunately, by reserve users.  Please take a bag with you and do a quick clean up when you visit.

Please be the eyes that we need to ensure that the reserve remains a safe place for visitors.  No incidents have ever been reported while under KRAG management and we would like for it to stay that way.

The support that KRAG receives from the Jbay Tourism Office is much appreciated.  Thanks also to the hard-working maintenance crew, Hennie (chairman) and Wentzel (vice-chairman).

Contact numbers for KRAG:

Hennie 083-406 3159 Wentzel 072-534 5914

DONATIONS:

Bank name: ABSA Branch code: 632005

Account name: KRAG Account number: 4096986749,

or via SnapScan using the QR SnapScan below or the SnapScan link https://pos.snapscan.io/qr/mGmbj9vz .

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